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February 27, 2007

Arts News from the Outback

John Stoehr

Buffalo News weighs in on Albright-Knox sell-off
"The bottom line is this: The Albright-Knox Art Gallery has a worldwide reputation for its collection of modern art, and it can either polish that reputation or stagnate and watch its luster fade and its international visitor drawing power erode. Polishing requires money, and the gallery board has decided rightly to focus on its core mission of exhibiting, preserving and collecting modern and contemporary art - and to find the money for that by auctioning off parts of the collection that don't tightly fit the core mission."
(Thanks to the Buffalo News, in which this editorial appeared Saturday)

Fisk University poised to sell prized O'Keeffe amids calls for higher bids
"The cash-strapped university is seeking to sell this painting ['Radiator Building -- Night, New York'] and Marsden Hartley's 1913 'Painting No. 3' from the Alfred Stieglitz Collection donated to the school by O'Keeffe in 1949. In a deal announced last week, the O'Keeffe Museum would ... buy the O'Keeffe work for $7 million. But the art market is surging right now, with some works selling for record prices -- including one Willem de Kooning painting, 'Woman III,' that sold for a staggering $137.5 million last fall. This has led some observers to wonder if Fisk might not be letting go of 'Radiator Building' at a price that amounts to a fire sale."
(Thanks to Jonathan Marx, staff writer for the Tennessean)

Lexington, like many midsized cities, exploring ways culture boosts prestige
"As cooperation among Lexington museums picks up for the 2010 World Equestrian Games and the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial celebration, their relationships could come to change the cultural life of Lexington. Many midsize cities that compete with larger, better-known neighbors are exploring ways to make themselves stand out to visitors from far away and to residents who could be tempted to drive elsewhere. Consider Dayton -- a city just a few hours from Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland -- where some arts and cultural groups have grown stronger by combining or by partnering with businesses and schools."
(Thanks to Jamie Gumbrecht, culture writer for the Lexington Herald-Leader)

Joe Boyd, underground rock's invisible man
"It's an odd query coming from the Harvard-educated muso who cut Pink Floyd's first record, produced Nick Drake, made the definitive documentary about Jimi Hendrix and helmed R.E.M.'s best album. But Boyd's varied tastes and easy manner have served him well over the course of a nearly five-decade career. From leading the blues revival to capturing the zeitgeist of Swinging London, helping midwife the English Folk boom to prowling the frontiers of world music, Boyd has been a significant if relatively unknown figure in the history of modern music, serving as a promoter, producer, label owner, filmmaker and self-described 'eminence grise.'"
(Thanks to Bob Mehr of the Memphis Commercial Appeal)

Posted by John Stoehr at February 27, 2007 1:01 AM

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